Se­cu­rity op­er­a­tives ar­rest 10 sus­pected cultists in Plateau

Sunday Trust - - NEWS - From Lami Sadiq, Jos

The Op­er­a­tion Safe Haven, the multi-se­cu­rity agency charged with the se­cu­rity sit­u­a­tion in Plateau State has pa­raded 10 sus­pected cultists ter­ror­is­ing res­i­dents around Jos me­trop­o­lis.

The task­force also said 49 sus­pects are on its wanted list and urged com­mu­ni­ties to pro­vide timely and ac­cu­rate in­for­ma­tion on crim­i­nals.

The Me­dia and In­for­ma­tion Of­fi­cer of the task­force, Ma­jor Adam Umar, while parad­ing the sus­pects de­scribed them as no­to­ri­ous cult mem­bers. He said though the spate of herds­men/ farmer cri­sis and armed ban­ditry across the state has greatly re­duced, the in­creas­ing na­ture of cult re­lated ac­tiv­i­ties is a source of con­cern. Ma­jor Adam said, “the DHQ re­cently com­mis­sioned op­er­a­tion 777, which in part is de­signed to con­sol­i­date on the achieve­ments of all on-go­ing op­er­a­tions across Nige­ria. In the course of ex­e­cut­ing this re­newed man­date, OPSH raided crim­i­nal hide­outs of some dreaded gangs and cultists lead­ing to the ar­rest of some of their mem­bers who are re­spon­si­ble for some of the in­se­cu­rity prob­lems be­ing ex­pe­ri­enced across the joint op­er­a­tion area.”

“Con­se­quently, with the ne­far­i­ous ac­tiv­i­ties of these cult groups, OPSH ne­ces­si­tated a clam­p­down on their hide­outs and upon the ar­rest, these 10 iden­ti­fied cult lead­ers are cur­rently in our cus­tody un­der­go­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tion,” he said.

The task­force spokesper­son said six sus­pects had ear­lier been ar­rested on the 21st of Oc­to­ber and that pre­lim­i­nary in­ves­ti­ga­tions led to the ar­rest of four oth­ers who have been pro­filed, cross ex­am­ined and their state­ments ob­tained.

“Anal­y­sis of the rev­e­la­tions from ar­rested group mem­bers re­vealed that there are five dis­tinct cult groups op­er­at­ing in Jos un­der var­i­ous ap­pel­la­tions as: Neo-Black Move­ment of Africa (NBM) aka Black Axe, Supreme Vik­ing aka Bag­gar/Ar­row, Ayeh, Buc­ca­neers and Tin Gold aka Blue Bed.”

Our cor­re­spon­dent, who spoke with the sus­pects re­ports that they all con­firmed to be mem­bers of cult groups though some said they had re­signed their mem­ber­ship.

Amos Lucky, 25, a mem­ber of Black Axe said he was lured into cultism at the univer­sity by a fi­nal year Law stu­dent. The grad­u­ate of Com­puter Science from the Univer­sity of Jos, said ex­cept for the power they ex­er­cised, there was no gain in join­ing cultism be­cause they were made to pay a se­mes­ter due of N3,000 to the cult lead­er­ship led by one Zam­b­ota.


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